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The Future of Your Workforce

by Donald A. Phin, Esq. - President, Employer Advisors Network, Inc. on 12/31/2003
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An article in The Economist about the future of the corporation concluded that to survive a corporation must be lean, flexible, reputable, and talented. One of the greatest challenges to survival will be government regulation, with an estimated annual price tag of $1 trillion ($1,000,000,000,000) in the U.S. alone.

What do these conclusions mean for your company?

Leanness: Middle management and micro-management are defunct. The trend today is from junior to senior, student to mentor, and network to network. No more driving orders down a hierarchical chain. If you're still holding on to this dated notion - get rid of it!

Flexibility: Lifetime job security gave way long ago to uncertainty for workers and managers alike. Flexibility requires more loosening of the reins of control; better communication with input from the entire workforce; proactive, rather than reactive thinking; and realizing that your career is due for a change - whether you planned on it or not.

Reputation: Whether you call it "branding" or any other name, customers and clients need to trust in who you are, not just what you do. This reputation will depend in large part on how you treat employees, how they treat your customers and clients, and on the activities of your company in the local community.

Talent: This is perhaps the most important factor. The battle to find and keep "talented workers" who can survive and thrive in a lean and flexible environment will be essential. You'll need to test the skills and characters of your workers before and during their employment.

Regulation: Top employers provided most of the "regulated" benefits before they became mandatory. Be proactive. Go beyond regulatory requirements to offer the highest level of employee benefits that your profits will allow. Going the extra mile will yield a wealth of dividends in terms of attraction, retention, and customer/client satisfaction.

Conclusion: Ask yourself if your company is lean (doing more with less), flexible, reputable, and talented. And, instead of bemoaning regulation, ask "how can we advance our company by caring for workers and customers/clients beyond what's required?"

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Categories: 2004

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